About . . . . Classes . . . . Books . . . . Vita . . . . Blog. . . . Podcast

by Peter Moskos

March 22, 2016

A Toddlin' Town

From AP:
In all, Chicago has paid a staggering sum — about $662 million — on police misconduct since 2004, including judgments, settlements and outside legal fees, according to city records. The payouts, for everything from petty harassment to police torture, have brought more financial misery to a city already drowning in billions of dollars of pension debt.
The Chicago police said there were 45 firings and 28 suspensions from 2011 through 2015 in a department of about 12,000. Some cases remain open.
The city's top lawyer, Stephen Patton, says his office has reduced costs with new strategies: It has cut the number of outside lawyers by more than 80 percent, taken more cases to trial (the corporation counsel's office won 21 of 28 last year), whittled down a backlog and spread the word it will no longer settle small cases routinely.
Burge cases — including settlements and outside lawyers — have cost the city more than $92 million (about $109 million, if county and state expenses are included), according to Taylor, who keeps his own tally.
And I'm just going to beat Pirate to the punch.


IrishPirate said...

Under Daley the lesser city typically settled cases quickly and out of court. This resulted in more cases being filed. Under Rahm that's changed a bit. Now the McDonald shooting was an XXXXception. Settled that quickly and quietly pre election. shhhhhhhh. Under the lesser plaintiff's lawyers were big campaign contributors.

Best to get a reputation for fighting cases in court which has resulted in fewer cases being filed by attorneys.

Burge is the gift that keeps on giving. Sadly, you'll find a substantial number of retired cops and a lesser number of current CPD who will either defend what he did or deny it happened.

As for Chicago the shootings keep on happening. Now hitting the downtown environs. https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20160322/downtown/even-downtown-hasnt-been-spared-from-chicagos-shooting-epidemic

Shootings between SUV's on Lake Shore Drive, wheelchair bound Section 8 Luxury voucher holders shooting up highrise gyms, cats and dogs living together........real end of the world stuff.

Beat 522 said...

Are there any comparable statistics out there for other cities and their rate of settling lawsuits? I'm just wondering how much cities like Philadelphia or Los Angeles have paid out on police misconduct. Is Chicago just unique in being quick to settle?

I know former superintendent Weis wanted to out a halt on easy settlements and pushed to take more frivolous complaints to trial. I'm unsure if that's still a trend.